May 29, 2012

His Excellency Ali Hassan Mwinyi, Second President of the United Republic of Tanzania;
Honorable Bernard K. Membe, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, 
Honourable Ministers and Deputy Ministers, 
Amb. Ombeni Sefue, Chief Secretary and Convener of the Global 2013 Dialogue,
Dr. Mihaela Smith, CEO of the Commonwealth Partnership for Technology Management and Co-Convener of the Global 2013 Dialogue,
Excellencies Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Distinguished Smart Partners, 
Invited Guests, 
Ladies and Gentlemen,

It gives me great pleasure to join all the smart partners gathered here today to witness the launching of the official preparations for the Global 2013 Smart Partnership Dialogue. I take this opportunity to thank our distinguished guests and friends of the Smart way of life who have travelled many miles to be here with us at this solemn occasion.
It is the invaluable contributions of the people gathered here today that have made and are making the Smart Partnership Dialogue relevant and strong.  The dialogue is a result of collective effort and continuing legacy of many individuals from many countries across the world, to which I pay tribute. Indeed, it would be remiss of me not to recognize the singular efforts in particular of Dr. Mahathir Mohammed, Former Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dr. Mihaela Smith, current CEO of the Commonwealth Partnership for Technology Management, and our very own Professor Msangi among others. These individuals have pushed the movement from being confined to the realm of technology and a forum for the few, to the creative and respected platform for discussing serious issues of development on the global arena. And the good thing is, these issues are discussed, freely, without the limitations of borders, rank or file.

Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen;
I agreed to host the next session of the Smart Partnership Dialogue here in Tanzania during the Langkawi International Dialogue that took place in Putrajaya, Malaysia in June 2011. My decision to host the Dialogue was not by accident. It was based on my conviction following my experience of participating in the Dialogue twice, first in Munyonyo, Uganda and then Malaysia in 2011. In both occasions, I found that the Dialogues provided a unique forum of interaction and equal opportunity for all participants. It did not matter whether you were a Head of State or  a  CEO of a growing company, everyone had an equal voice.
The dynamism of the Dialogue created a rare atmosphere of solidarity that crossed out status, political and ideological boundaries. This was the approach that I believe works, the approach that fostered friendships and bottom-to-top networking that produces international joint ventures based on rare and lasting political goodwill.
Distinguished Smart Partners,
 Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Theme for the 2013 Smart Partnership Dialogue is “Leveraging Technology for Africa’s Socio Economic Development”. It is a wide theme, an ambitious theme, that I believe will provide sufficient sub-themes to cater for vibrant and fruitful discussions. We are branding the Dialogue the Global 2013 Smart Partnership Dialogue in recognition of the global scope of the theme.  We have chosen the theme simply because technology is quickly becoming a prerequisite for development. It is also a prerequisite for survival in the current socio economic environment in the global arena. In the present globalization era, one cannot shy away from technology and Africa needs it most.
The easiest way to illustrate this is by looking at how a farmer in Tanzania does business with a company in China, via a mobile phone and access to internet. This increasing interconnectivity made possible by advanced telecommunication and internet allows instant communication, reducing the cost in terms of time and money that distance previously imposed. Indeed, technology empowers farmers and allows them to cultivate without worrying about the vagaries of weather through irrigation and green house options. Governments are able to improve governance systems through IT solutions.
As a country we want to use the opportunity of hosting the Global 2013 Smart Partnership Dialogue to send out a clear message to all the technologically advanced countries that the continent has geared itself towards the discourse on technology. We are willing to accept partners and to incorporate technological change and advancement in all initiatives that are currently being conceived, designed and implemented in the continent. And it is our sincere hope that the forum will achieve that noble objective of engendering the technological change that is needed in the continent.

Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am happy to announce that the Dialogue will be held here in Dar Es Salaam from 24th - 28th May next year. We are ready to host the event, and pleased to receive participants from all nations.  We count ourselves lucky that we have with us members of the Joint Executive Group of the Smart Partnership Movement, the Joint Secretariat Members from the CPTM in London, friends of the Movement and previous conveners of the Dialogue from different countries as well as Members of the Diplomatic Corps. We implore you to be the goodwill Ambassadors of this Dialogue back in your countries. We also request you to communicate our invitations to your leaders and your people. We are looking forward to seeing them next year!
 As part of technological change, a website that provides more information on the Dialogue, including registration and administrative details, programme, sub themes and side events, will also be officially launched. I would like to urge potential participants to use this technological tool as well.
Distinguished Smart Partners,
Ladies and gentlemen,
Now it is my singular honor and pleasure to launch the national preparations and the official website of the Global 2013 Smart Partnership Dialogue.

Thank you for your kind attention.


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